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Date: 7/26/2016

Title: Have the Hottest Days of Summer Come and Gone for Some?

The past two weeks have brought extremely warm temperatures to a large portion of the nation, especially in the Midwest, Corn Belt and East. Very warm temperatures have also been reported in central and southern areas of California.

The heat is the result of large high pressure center that developed over the nation’s midsection which helped draw in some very warm air (as well as high humidity) from the lower latitudes northward into the heart of the nation.

Many areas experienced the 90s and lower 100s with uncomfortably high heat indexes due to an increase in the humidity.

As we head toward the end of July, however, there are some hints in our long range charts that a subtle shift in the jet stream pattern will result in temperatures that will not be as hot in August as compared to July for some areas of the Midwest, Corn Belt and east.

The big high pressure center in the nation’s midsection may shift westward in the coming weeks.

This will shift the core of the heat to areas west of the Continental Divide and will allow a northwest wind aloft to occasionally push cooler air southward along the east slopes of the Rockies and then eastward into the Plains and Midwest. 

If this shift in the high pressure ridge takes place then the odds are high that the first two weeks of August will not be as hot as the last few weeks of July. Also, there will be a better chance for rain as well, especially in the Plains, Corn Belt and East as well as some areas of the High Plains and Southern Plains.

The expected shift also means that the hottest temperatures of the summer by be over for some, especially in the Plains and Corn Belt.